Suave, sexy secret agents in action-packed espionage. From James Bond to Triple-X.
It was pointed out that my love of Top Secret and my love of 1PG pick-up games should not be exclusive. Rather, that with most of my players not interested in the crunch of Top Secret, I should take my Top Secret adventures and run them with a simpler system that we are still familiar with.
Thus, back to the 1PG line (games from Deep7 that only have 1 page of game rules, more-or-less), this time to pick up their Espionage game – Agent S.E.V.E.N.
I pull out the various 1PG games every couple of months – typically at geek social gatherings where rules-light action-oriented games are more welcome than traditional RPG fare. Like the rest of the line, the game has very few rules (in this case the character sheet, character generation and all the game rules fit on a single page) and focuses instead of a series of adventures, each also one page in length.
And one of the things I love about the 1PG line? Almost completely random character creation. You sit down, explain the theme of the game, and everyone rolls up a character in 15 minutes, and you typically get a nice mix of ideas and characters and everyone has fun with it.
So, for our secret agent, I start by rolling 1d3 for each of the four ability scores. In this game they are Fitness, Looks, Finesse and Brains. Each ability score has between 3 and 5 skills under it, and we’ll get to those next. The dice are in a strange mood this morning and I get Fitness and Finesse of 1 each, and Looks and Brains of 3 each. Not agile, strong nor suave, but sexy and smart. Having just watched clips of “The Black Hole” on PBS, I’ll name him Agent Maximilian… Maximilian Fielding.
I get to roll for his background on a 1d6 table and get Criminal (so Max has always been good at this larcenous stuff it seems). This gives him +1 Pose, Con, Thievery and Gadgetry (his Pose and Gadgetry skills officially rock now). For his “Status” I get “Sharpshooter” which gives him +1 shooting.
Now I get 1d6 points to spend on skills. Skills provide a bonus to stats when making rolls for those skills. I can also get extra skill points by giving myself negative skill levels in things I don’t want to be good at, as long as the total of skill + stat is 1 or higher (so I can’t take negative levels in any Fitness or Finesse skills, since those stats are already at 1). I get 3 points from the d6 roll and invest them in a bit more shooting, seduction, and thievery. I also reduce his languages skill by 1 to get one more point to bring his con up also. For a criminal, he’s lousy in a fight unless he’s got a gun in his hand. More of a conman and gigolo than a thug, I think.
The 1PG equivalent of hit points is Blood. In this version I get 2d6+5 Blood (13). Guts is next which you roll against whenever something bad happens to avoid losing Wits. It’s a simple d6 roll and Max gets a 1. He’s far from the bravest agent on the force – more likely to run and hide and then stick his head up only once he’s got his gun out and is out of harm’s immediate way. If he fails a Guts check (which should be pretty often), he loses Wits – which is basically mental hit points. In this case, he has 4 Wits, so he’s got to try to keep out of too much trouble during his first few missions at least.
Then we get to Fate. When damaged, an agent can try to roll under his Fate to prevent the damage (since spies are a lot more fragile than most characters in modern military games – they are about not being hit instead of having lots of hit points / blood). Fate is determined by rolling 1d6 four times, once for each ability score. For each time you roll the ability score or less, you get one Fate. None of the rolls are low for Max, so he has a starting Fate of 3 – destined to be a red shirt.
Agent Maximilian Fielding
Gen. Knowledge 3